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From Julian Hyde <>
Subject Re: Giving our PMs and contributors triage rights on GitHub
Date Thu, 13 Aug 2020 18:43:06 GMT
By PM, I presume that you mean either Product Manager or Program Manager. I’ve worked at
a few companies that practiced “commercial open source”, and there is inherent tension
in the relationship with the “business” people.

The key questions are whether a PM can participate in the community (which means being active
on the dev list), make contributions of value to the project (‘earn merit’), and can put
aside their professional affiliation and act solely in the interests of the project. This
is precisely what we require committers to do.

So, by this logic, a PM would earn committership in a few short months. But I guess you’re
running into a chicken-and-egg problem: if the only contributions a PM can make are triaging
bugs, then how can they earn enough merit to be made a contributor? One solution is for them
to contribute in other ways, for example writing documentation and testing.

There is also a concern whether they can "act solely in the interests of the project”. Most
of the PMs I know can do this, but a few cannot. Maybe it’s part of the ethics of “fiduciary
responsibility” taught at business school; many PMs see themselves as potential officers
of their company someday, and act accordingly.

Also beware establishing this model in a project where a majority of committers are employed
by one company. The business people at such a company, even if they are entirely invisible
on the dev list, have huge influence over the project by what development efforts they choose
to fund, and how much time they give committers to review patches from outside the organization.


> On Aug 13, 2020, at 9:27 AM, Maxime Beauchemin <> wrote:
> xposting from - what's the right place to post this
> for ASF-infra's attention?
> -----------------------------------------------
> Hi all,
> It just came to my attention that GitHub added a new "triage" access level
> at the repo level.
> In the past, we've identified that it was impossible for non-committers
> (especially our PMs and contributors-that-are-not-yet-committers) to help
> us triage issues, apply labels, assign reviews, close and reopen issues as
> needed. It's really clear to me that we really need all the help we can get
> in this area, and that not being able to involve more people into this
> process hurts us, and is a clear operational downside of using the ASF
> infra.
> More technically, I think the way to make that easy and painless would be
> to add a new entry to the `.asf.yaml` file that would enable maintainers to
> assign the "triage" role to whoever they see fit. For reference, here's
> more context on that piece of automation I'd like to latch this onto here:
> Max

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